By Karen Flores, ABS-CBNnews.com
MANILA, Philippines – While most Filipinos think that it is impossible to grow grapes in the Philippines because of its warm weather, an expert in viticulture stressed that the country is a better place for the fruit than the United States and Europe -- two places where most of the world’s wines are produced.
Unknown to many, the Philippines has been home to several vineyards, said Avelino Lomboy, who has been growing grapes in the country for more than four decades.
He said some of these are located in La Union, Cebu, Cotabato, Iloilo, Masbate and Nueva Ecija.
“In the Philippines, we have the best climate for grapes, which is 25 to 34 degrees Centigrade,” Lomboy explained. “And the temperatures the whole year round stay that way until winter. In Europe, you only grow [grapes] once a year. Here, you can grow [grapes] the whole year.”
“Grapes grow based on summer, so we have the whole year. Heat is not a problem,” he added, referring to the misconception that grapes need cold weather to grow.